17 Inspiring Writing Quotes

Ernest Hemingway in Milan, 1918

Ernest Hemingway in Milan, 1918 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m a huge procrastinator, but recent panic about wasting my 20s without accomplishing enough has turned me into an obsessive career woman (even though I’m still unsure of what this career is, except that writing is the only thing that consistently makes me happy).

I think about writing, the process of writing, and feel absolutely guilty and dissatisfied on the days I do not write. Literally, I feel like I’m wasting away, when I don’t put a pen on paper, or spend at least an hour typing out my thoughts.

My solace on the days that I don’t write have always been that I also spend a considerable amount of time reading- not just fiction, but a lot of times, what others have to say about the writing process.

Writing keeps me sane- and I’ll be the first to admit it, because I can fill up pages and pages and journals and never run out of thoughts to synthesize difficult situations or complex ideas. I’ve only recently come to realize there is no such time as today to get the ball rolling. Get out there and do yourself a favour: it is the biggest possible disgrace you can do to yourself to be a private individual. Embrace the unknown. Write, write, write it all out.

I hope these little tidbits and snippets and humorous insights inspire you as much they have inspired me over the years, and kept me sane when thinking about how ridiculous reality is.

      • “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” — Stephen King

    • “Quantity produces quality. If you only write a few things, you’re doomed.” — Ray Bradbury
    • “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” — Jack London
    • “Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.” — Ernest Hemingway
    • “Write while the heat is in you. The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled to burn a hole with. He cannot inflame the minds of his audience.” — Henry David Thoreau
    • “If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” — Stephen King
    • “Simple English is no one’s mother tongue. It has to be worked for.” — Jacques Barzun
    • “You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write.” — Saul Bellow
    • “Schools don’t really allow failure and yet it’s part of any endeavour, not just writing.” — Roddy Doyle
    • “Read, read, read. Read everything — trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.” — William Faulkner
    • “You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.” — Ray Bradbury
    • “If you wait for inspiration to write you’re not a writer, you’re a waiter.” — Dan Poynter
    • “The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon.” — Robert Cormier
    • “Writing is the most fun you can have by yourself.” — Terry Pratchett
    • “If I waited till I felt like writing, I’d never write at all.” — Anne TyleR
    • “Easy reading is damn hard writing.” — Nathaniel Hawthorne
    • “I’m writing a book. I’ve got the page numbers done.” — Steven Wright
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